Insults to Injury – When your ex-spouse files for Bankruptcy

So, you just finished your divorce. Your lawyer was successful in getting all of your credit cards paid (or to be paid) by your ex-spouse and then they file for bankruptcy. You receive notice because you are a co-debtor on the debts and you are less than pleased. Here are a few things your should know.

Child support and spousal support are not discharged in a Bankruptcy (i.e., they don’t go away). In fact, if your ex-spouse filed a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, your efforts, and those of the Attorney General to collect child support, are not affected by the automatic stay.

However, property division, which includes paying credit card bills, is dischargeable in Bankruptcy. But, it is not automatically discharged if the ex-spouse appears in the Bankruptcy and objects. In such a circumstance, the Bankruptcy Court will weigh the burdens to both parties and will decide whether to allow the obligation to pay the credit card bills on behalf of the spouse to survive the Bankruptcy. The only way you can get this protection is by getting good legal advise from a Bankruptcy Attorney and appearing in your ex-spouse’s case.

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